Marriage: Since the adoption of the Republican Civil code in 1926, based of the Swiss Civil Code, Turkish males can marry only one woman at a time. It is forbidden by law in Turkey to marry before the age of 15 in the case of females and 17 in the case of males. Early marriages are more frequent in the rural areas than in the cities, where the education, military service, acquiring a profession and other factors tend to delay marriages. In rural areas, marriages are generally in line with the wishes or approval of the families involved whereas in cities it is generally the couple themselves that make the decision to marry.
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  Ankara - Cappadocia - ANKARA (The capital city of Republic Turkiye)
Ankara, the capital city, is situated 860 meters above sea level in the centre of the Anatolian region, which is the heartland of Turkey. This region is flanked by mountains to the north. Running parallel to the Black Sea Coast, and to the south lie Toros Mountains, which continue to the Mediterranean Coast. Many Turks lamented Ataturk’s decision to change the seat of the government from Istanbul to what was in the early 1920’s essentially a sleepy backwater in the midst of the rolling Anatolian plains. Accordingly, on October 13th 1923, Ankara guarded by its very remoteness, was declared the capital of the Republic of Turkey. In the past 76 years, Ankara has developed into a lively and modern metropolis offering most of the cultural and social amenities available in capitals elsewhere across Europe. Ankara’s modern facade belies its historic origins which are thought to date back to around 1200 BC. The town is believed to have been found by the Hittites and later taken over by the Phrgyians, the Gauls, the Romans and the Byzantines, respectively. In 1071 the city was conquered by the Seljuks, who were later to be ousted by the Ottomans. Following the Ottoman takeover, the city plunged into decline. Small provincial town until 1923, Ankara has expanded greatly from the tiny area around the old citadel walls (Ulus) where Ataturk first made his headquarters, to enclose the hill village of Cankaya to the south. In fact Ankara had been a flourishing trade and administrative centre in Roman times. It is believed to have been the birthplace of King Midas, of the fabled golden touch. It has been established with even greater certainty that Ankara was the summer capital of the Roman emperors around AD 400. The emperors are believed to have shifted their court to the cooler climes of Ankara to get away from the humidity and heat of the erstwhile Constantinople. For a taste of the ancient (which is decidedly rare in Ankara) there is no better place to start than the Ulus Square where stands a huge statue of Ataturk on horseback. The inscription on the statue is written in Ottoman letters as it dates back to the time before Turkey adopted the Latin alphabet in 1928. Downhill, across the road is the small building which used to house the first Turkish Parliament or Grand National Assembly. Further along on Cankiri Caddesi stands a Roman column, known as Julian’s Column, one of the few to survive outside Istanbul. Thought to date back from AD 360, it is one of the most impressive remains of Roman architecture in the city. Off the same avenue are the ruins of the Roman baths and the Temple Augustus, which stands near the famous Haci Bayram Mosque. The Roman Baths consist mainly of same rather unimpressive brick foundations. But there are also many pillars, tombstones and other remnants of the Roman city assembled here. The tombstones are often designed in the shape of a door and inscriptions or several of them are in Armenian and the dates show they were re-used in the last century. The temple of Augustus situated at the back of the mosque, with which it shares a wall, was built by the Emperor whose name it bears. After his death it was converted into a Christian church under the Byzantines. On entering you will be struck by a Roman inscription in Greek and Latin chronicling the life and deeds of the Emperor, which are one of the most important sources of information on Augustus’s reign. The Haci Bayram Mosque and its environs will offer you a real taste of Islamic Turkey. The mosque is one of the oldest in Ankara and dates originally from the 15th century. It is still active and is one of the main mosques, alongside the modern Kocatepe Mosque in Kizilay, where funerals are conducted. Its namesake, Haci Bayram, was the head of a dervish order who died in 1430 and believed in helping the poor and needy. A steady stream of visitors can be seen daily at his tomb located in the mosque complex, which also includes numerous Islamic bookshops. All manner of religious paraphernalia, including worry beads, ornate Korans, rosewater and headscarves can be found here. Be sure to dress modestly so as not to attract hostile looks. Ulus is the oldest, and without question the most colourful, part of Ankara. The focal point is the Ankara Citadel, a complex of ancient crumbling double walls and classical columns which date back to Roman times. In the narrow cobbled alleyways in and around the castle, life continues much as it did over 50 years ago. Down the road is Copper Alley where as its name suggests one can find a dazzling array of old and new copper, Turkish, Afghan, and Caucasian carpets as well as old wooden furniture at relatively reasonable prices. But don’t forget to bargain and always assume you are being charged double to start with! There is also an open air spice market just outside the main entry of the citadel, where you can buy dried fruit, nuts and all manner of spices, ranging from curry to ginger. No trip to Ulus is worthwhile without a visit to the magnificent Museum of Anatolian Civilisations. Housed in a former Hamam or bathhouse it boasts a world class collection. of masterpieces from the Neolithic and Bronze ages, and the Assyrians, Phrygian, Urartu, Hellenistic, and Roman eras. But the most prized collection is a comprehensive array of Hatti and Hittite arts and crafts dating from the 2nd millennium BC. Lining the road in the Sihhiye district are the buildings of the Ankara University, the Embroidery Institute and the Opera House. Bakanliklar is the area where some ministry buildings, as well as the Turkish Grand National Assembly, are found. Downtown Ankara is developing into a modern city, witnessed by the numerous high rises that have sprung up over recent years. Designer boutiques, such as Donna Karan, Gay Laroche, Escada and fast food restaurants including Mc Donalds, Burger King and TGI Friday’s have become commonplace in a city that was essentially a provincial backwater for decades. Continue up on Ataturk Bulvari, through the city centre, Kizilay and Kavaklidere, where this road is lined with beautiful old embassy and government buildings. The Karum Shopping Mall at the foot of the Sheraton Hotel is a veritable haven for retail therapy. Everything ranging from designer clothes, to ceramics, and from finely crafted jewellery to perfumed candles are housed in this modern three-floor complex, which is a few minutes walk away from Tunali Hilmi, Ankara’s main up scale shopping strip. Carry on up Cinnah Caddesi towards Cankaya and the Atakule Tower, which is a major landmark and modern shopping mall with restaurants. The top of Atakule, at 125 metres, offers a magnificent view over the hole city. The President’s Palace and Prime Minister’s residence are also both located in Cankaya. Many embassies are likewise located in Cankaya and/or in Gaziosmanpasa on the adjacent hill. Headquarters for the land forces, air and naval commands and the Foreign Ministry which used to be on Ismet Inonu Bulvari are gradually being moved to larger modern buildings along the Eskisehir highway. Settlements on the outskirts of the city (on the way to the airport) are the first stop of immigrants from the countryside. Migration from rural to urban areas continued unabated in Turkey since 1960s. These settlements are often referred to as “gecekondu” or “built overnight” houses. These dwellings may have an impermanent appearance, but they are in fact an established community and though they may lack some city services, most have electricity, and almost all rooftops are adorned with TV antennas and even satellite dishes. “Night Life” in Ankara mainly consists of eating out, going to a bar, a movie or attending a concert. A whole string of charming cafes have mushroomed along Arjantin Caddesi in the Gaziosmanpasa area, which is now referred to as the “Ankara Soho”. Ataturk’s Mausoleum is built in a combination of styles reminiscent of Hittite and ancient Anatolian architecture. A small museum containing his clothes and gifts from numerous world leaders offers an interesting insight into his life.
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Dear Toroshan Sen, I want to thank you for the excellent service given to Mr. and Mrs. Ibarguen on their Tour to Cappadocia. This was the first time that we contact your services and we are very pleased and look forward to continuing working with you in the near future. Regards, Roxana Lou Asesora de Viajes Grupo AMT Viajes / RADIUS® Guatemala Virtuoso® Member 13 Calle 7-25 Zona 10 / Guatemala